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Science at Red Oak

Red Oak Primary School teaches science in accordance with the national curriculum aims:

  • To develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
  • To develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that helps them to answer scientific questions about the world around them.
  • To ensure children are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
  • To provide a high-quality science education that provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
  • To develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
  • One of the major factors within Science teaching at Red Oak is the explicit focus on the Scientific Enquiry aspect of the National Curriculum.  This focal point of science within Red Oak has been developed to increase children’s ability to make predictions about scientific concepts and, evaluate and amend them through analysing and interpreting data.  This enables our pupils to question and discuss science-based issues that may affect their own lives and the future of the world too.

Curriculum Information

At Red Oak, the science curriculum is taught in half-termly blocks through discreet science lessons. We ensure that there are opportunities for children of all abilities to develop their skills and knowledge in each unit, and we also build progression into the science scheme of work, so that the children are increasingly challenged as they move through the school.

The main areas covered across both Key stage 1 and 2:

  • Living things and their habitats
  • Plants
  • Seasonal changes
  • Materials
  • Human biology
  • Forces
  • Earth and space
  • Light
  • States of matter
  • Electricity

A yearly overview of the science taught at Red Oak can be viewed below, for a larger version, please click on the PDF:

Key Stage 1:

The principal focus of science teaching in key stage 1 is to enable pupils to experience and observe phenomena, looking more closely at the natural and humanly-constructed world around them. They should be encouraged to be curious and ask questions about what they notice. They should be helped to develop their understanding of scientific ideas by using different types of scientific enquiry to answer their own questions, including observing changes over a period of time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out simple comparative tests, and finding things out using secondary sources of information. They should begin to use simple scientific language to talk about what they have found out and communicate their ideas to a range of audiences in a variety of ways. Most of the learning about science should be done through the use of first-hand practical experiences, but there should also be some use of appropriate secondary sources, such as books, photographs and videos.

Lower Key Stage 2:

The principal focus of science teaching in lower key stage 2 is to enable pupils to broaden their scientific view of the world around them. They should do this through exploring, talking about, testing and developing ideas about everyday phenomena and the relationships between living things and familiar environments, and by beginning to develop their ideas about functions, relationships and interactions. They should ask their own questions about what they observe and make some decisions about which types of scientific enquiry are likely to be the best ways of answering them, including observing changes over time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out simple comparative and fair tests and finding things out using secondary sources of information. They should draw simple conclusions and use some scientific language, first, to talk about and, later, to write about what they have found out.

Upper Key Stage 2:

The principal focus of science teaching in upper key stage 2 is to enable pupils to develop a deeper understanding of a wide range of scientific ideas. At upper key stage 2, they should encounter more abstract ideas and begin to recognise how these ideas help them to understand and predict how the world operates. They should also begin to recognise that scientific ideas change and develop over time. They should select the most appropriate ways to answer science questions using different types of scientific enquiry, including observing changes over different periods of time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out comparative and fair tests and finding things out using a wide range of secondary sources of information. Pupils should draw conclusions based on their data and observations, use evidence to justify their ideas, and use their scientific knowledge and understanding to explain their findings.

Working Scientifically:

‘Working scientifically’ specifies the understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science for each year group and is taught and developed through practical elements in lessons. Scientific enquiry includes: observing over time; pattern seeking; identifying, classifying and grouping; comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations); and researching using secondary sources. Pupils should seek answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data.

Scientific Language:

The quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are developed through modelling from class teachers. They should begin to use simple scientific language to talk about what they have found out and communicate their ideas to a range of audiences in a variety of ways. Teachers ensure that pupils build secure foundations by using discussion to probe and remedy their misconceptions. They are encouraged to be curious and ask questions about what they notice. They are helped to develop their understanding of scientific ideas by using different types of scientific enquiry to answer their own questions, including observing changes over a period of time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out simple comparative tests, and finding things out using secondary sources of information.

EYFS:

We teach science in Reception classes as an integral part of the topic work covered during the year. As the Reception class is part of the Foundation Stage of the National Curriculum, we relate the scientific aspects of the children’s work to the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals (ELGs), which underpin the curriculum planning for children aged three to five. Science makes a significant contribution to developing a child’s knowledge and understanding of the world.

Assessment

  • The school uses the steps assessment model to assess and track pupil’s achievement in this subject.
  • The Key Stage Attainment Targets have been integrated into a progression of scientific skills and knowledge, which build upon previous learning.

Assessment for learning is continuous throughout the planning, teaching and learning cycle. However, children are more formally assessed every term in KS1 and KS2 using a variety of methods:

  • Observation of pupils;
  • Discussion with pupils;
  • Marking work;

Termly teacher assessment from Years 1 – 6